TRO Ruling Made Legal Precedent Authorizing Pritzker’s Consecutive EO’s

By Benjamin Cox on November 17, 2020 at 10:30am

Sangamon Co. Judge Raylene Grischow

A temporary restraining order rejection in the Illinois 2nd District Appellate Court by a restaurant has now become legal precedent in the state. Governor J.B. Pritzker’s Administration asked the court to file its opinion from November 6th on the rejection of Fox Fire restaurant’s request for a temporary restraining order against Pritzker’s executive orders closing indoor dining and bar service across the state. The rejection of the TRO has now made Pritzker’s consecutive executive orders able to stand.

The opinion says it is not tasked with questioning Pritzker’s policies in the executive, but rather whether or not he has legal authority to issue successive executive orders, which through their opinion, says he does have that authority. The precedent will now likely apply to 11 additional cases that are filed under similar circumstances across the state.

The precedent comes on the heels of 5 Springfield area restaurants having their food handlers permits suspended by the Sangamon County Health Department for defying the governor’s orders on indoor dining. A Sangamon County spokesman told WAND News the action was taken against Charlie Parkers, D&J Cafe, Fox Run, Sweet Basil Cafe and Casa Real. WAND News learned from county officials that three of the businesses, D&J Cafe, Sweet Basil Cafe and Fox Run, were cited Friday and fined $500.

In a walk back of previous statements that the city would follow its own guidelines, Springfield began following COVID-19 resurgence mitigations at midnight Friday, which do not permit indoor dining and set other restrictions. Mayor Jim Langfelder said that he is also considering a stiffer penalty for violating mask ordinances. The City of Quincy has also recently declared an emergency and begun implementing closures of indoor dining and bar service after previously saying it would not.

Thomas DeVore of Silver Lake Group Law

Ayre and Fox Run Restaurant and his Attorney, Thomas DeVore, are in Sangamon County court today to fight against the Sangamon County Health Department’s suspension of their food handler’s license.

Sangamon County Judge Raylene Grischow also gave Governor Pritzker another win yesterday says that he has power under state law and the state constitution to issue executive orders that mandate public health measures at schools amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Grischow ruled that Pritzker’s orders apply to all public and nonpublic schools from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade, and they allow schools to reopen as long as they follow IDPH public health requirements, which include capping the number of people in gatherings, mandatory face coverings and temperature screenings. DeVore says he plans on appealing the decision.